ERIC Number: ED307289
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1989-Apr
Reference Count: N/A
Date of Birth and Its Effect upon Performance in School over Subsequent Years.
Olson, George H.
The effects of age at entrance into school on subsequent elementary school performance were studied in a cohort of children who started grade 1 in the Dallas school system (Texas) in fall 1981. Most of the subjects were born on or after September 1, 1974 and before September 1, 1975; the spread of ages was 1 year. A total of 3,028 male and 3,019 female students was grouped into four seasonal categories based on time of birth. The subjects were between 6 and 7 years old when they entered grade 1. The Iowa Tests of Basic Skills were administered routinely to all of the students in all grade levels over the 6 years studied (1982 through 1987). In both mathematics and reading, older children began with an advantage over younger children and maintained this advantage through the 6 years studied. The advantage did not appear to be that of an accelerated learning rate, but rather that of a constant difference through elementary school. The performances of the oldest boys were comparable with those of the youngest girls, suggesting that maturation and development played a major role in the differential effects due to age. However, when the seasonal groups were compared, children entering grade 1 between the ages of 6 years 6 months and 6 years 9 months out performed those entering grade 1 between the ages of 6 years and 6 years 3 months; this difference remained constant and cannot be explained on the basis of maturation. Five tables and 10 graphs present study data. (SLD)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (San Francisco, March 27-31, 1989).